Freshman Britt Nelson (Cortland, N.Y./Homer H.S.) shattered the school record in the 1650 freestyle, helping lead Valparaiso's women into second place after the first day of the Mid-Continent Conference Swimming and Diving Championships held in Rochester, Mich.
The Crusaders tallied 68 points on the first day of the three day meet, tallying just the defending champions from Oakland (106 pts.). Western Illinois is third with 61 points, followed by IUPUI (26 pts.).
Nelson finished fourth in the mile event with a time of 17:57.89, just two seconds out of third place. Her time bettered Julie Derkin's previous mark set in 1999 by 14 seconds.
Maggie Kroemer (Brown Deer, Wis./Milwaukee Lutheran H.S.) finished ninth in the same event with a time of 18:51.63, moving her into sixth on the all-time lists at Valpo.
In the other event held on Thursday, the 800 freestyle relay of Katie Urbas (Ballwin, Mo./Marquette H.S.), Leah Schneider (Sussex, Wis./Arrowhead H.S.), Daniella Trombatore (Redding, Calif./Shasta H.S.), and Nelson placed third with a time of 8:03.95, the seventh best relay time at Valpo.
The Crusaders will dive back into the pool on Friday for the middle day of the meet. Preliminary heats begin at 9 a.m. CST, with finals being contested at 5 p.m. CST.